By Rick Land, guitarist for Resident Stone
1. Black Sabbath – One day when I was about 8 years old, I was riding in the car with my dad. Up to that point in my life, I had only been exposed to the music on the radio, but that day marked a turning point because my dad had the first Black Sabbath album. The minute the thunder storm effect rolled in, the chime of the bell and then the most evil sounding guitar riff ever written, that apocalpytic tri-tone riff to “Black Sabbath,” my life was changed immediately and I wanted to play electric guitar.
2. AC/DC – Next to Tony Iommi, Angus Young was my favorite guitarist as a kid. You know that one handed guitar solo I do in “Now She’s”? Go watch AC/DC live at Donnington, watch him do the intro to “Thunderstruck,” and you’ll see exactly where I got the idea from.
3. Al Di Meola – A few years after I discovered my favorite rock bands, the next step in my evolution as a guitar player came from fusion jazz players like John McLaughlin, Frank Gambale and most of all Al Di Meola. I consider Al Di Meola’s “Elegant Gypsy” to be the greatest guitar album of all time and his style of playing inspired me to incorporate all of the flashy speed playing I throw into my solos every now and again.
4. Guns N’ Roses – Although it’s probably just a coincidence that Slash and I have the same hair, I’ve been called his bastard son more than a few times. Although I don’t model my playing after his, he’s always been one of my favorite guitarists and GN’R was the most badass band of the 80s and 90s. I will fight anyone who disagrees.
5. Classical Music – Andreas Segovia especially has had an impact on me as a musician. I use classical influence in my solos all the time and if I’m practicing guitar at home I rarely play electric or rock music. More often than not I have an acoustic in my hands and am playing Segovia, Paganini or Bach.
1. Black Sabbath: “Black Sabbath” – Although not my favorite Sabbath album (“Master of Reality,” in case anyone was wondering) this is the album that started it all for me.
2. Guns N’ Roses: “Appetite For Destruction” – It’s GN’R at their absolute best, ’nuff said!
3. Al Di Meola: “Elegant Gypsy” – This is the greatest guitar album ever put out. Despite only being 6 tracks, it’s all Al needs to show that he is the best guitar player in the world.
4. Black Sabbath: “Master of Reality” – From “Into the Void,” to “Children of The Grave,” to “Snowblind,” to “Sweet Leaf,” this is Sabbath at their best and should be required listening to anyone who wants to pick up an instrument for the first time.
5. AC/DC: “Highway To Hell” – Skip the title track and what you have is arguably one of the best pure rock albums made in the 70s, or ever for that matter. Producer Mutt Lange brought the band to stadium levels with this one. Listen to songs like “Touch Too Much” “Walk All Over You” and “Night Prowler” to see what I’m talking about.